Fleas thrive on the soft warm fur of dogs and suck their blood. They plague dogs by irritating and making them itch. If left unattended, it can lead to problems such as anemia, skin allergies, dermatitis, and other skin infections. If your dog consumes the fleas, this can lead to tapeworms as well. Being a dog lover, you will want to quickly get rid of flea problems to stop your pet from suffering.
Here are some methods that you can use to get rid of fleas from your dogs.
You may want to start off with natural remedies before you use chemical-laden treatments. Many people find that the natural method works just as well as commercial flea killers.
Some natural remedies are as follows:
Use a flea comb to check if there are fleas in your dog. Comb your dog and dip the comb immediately into a bowl of water mixed with dish washing liquid. This should kill the fleas on your dog if the problem is not severe.
Grooming your dog
You should bathe and groom your dog regularly and more frequently in summer when the fleas are most active. By doing so, you will become aware of the presence of fleas before they infest your dog and house. If you wish to avoid harsh chemicals, there are natural pet shampoos and conditioners that can keep your dog free of fleas and healthy. Washing your dog with a bit of vinegar can also help to keep fleas away.You could also add a few drops of lavendar to your dog shampoo. After bathing, you could also mist the lavender oil on your dog’s hair every few days.
You can apply minced garlic with a dab of oil to your dog’s hair and apply it all over the body. Wash off the garlic after a few minutes.
The smell of garlic repels fleas. So, if you add a bit of garlic to your dog’s food, this should put the fleas off from your dog. Don’t worry about your dog smelly as this should not make your dog smell too much!
Brewer’s yeast is also known to repel fleas. You could also add some brewer’s yeast to your dog’s food.
Some people say that olive oil kills the fleas and make the fleas drop off from your dog’s hair. Apply olive oil all over your dog’s body and shampoo your dog. This will help to remove the fleas.
Baby power or baking soda
Applying baby powder or baking soda can smother the fleas. This is especially effective for puppies.
Sprinkle salt around your house and leave it for more than a week. You may also sprinkle salt on your dogs. As fleas dislike salt, you may get rid of fleas this way.
Commercial Flea Control Products
If the above natural remedies do not work for you, then you may need to use commercial flea control products.
Although the chemicals can harm your dog, it is better to get rid of the fleas to avoid further harm to your dog and flea infestation in your home.
Some of the commercial options are as follows:
Flea collars can keep fleas off your dogs as they contain some toxic chemical that can kill fleas. However, the Natural Resources Defense Council warns against the possible side effects on humans who touch their pets. Be careful when using flea collars due to the health warning. Besides, it is only effective on limited areas on your dog and may not work on all animals.
Topical treatments can be effective in keeping the fleas at bay for up to one month. Make sure you choose the right product for your dog and follow the instructions properly.
Frontline and Advantix are the most commonly used medication for getting rid of fleas effectively. It is highly recommended that you apply Frontline and Advantix at least 3 days after a bath as your pet needs to replenish its natural oils after a bath. The best place to apply Frontline and Advantix is at a place that your pet cannot scratch or lick.
Repeat the process 30 days later to prevent the fleas from returning.However, be careful about using these too often as some pets are found to have allergic reaction to them after a while.
There is an oral tablet called Capstar which you an buy from your local vets. Capstar come in single or six packs. It is easy to administer as the tablet is tiny. It can kill the fleas on your pets within 30 minutes and is a fairly safe for your pet. To prevent re-infestation, you can administer Frontline and Advantix in conjunction with Capstar. Before you use it, please check with your vet is it is suitable for your dog